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Acute Diarrhea

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Apr 2, 2024.

What do I need to know about acute diarrhea?

Acute diarrhea starts quickly and lasts a short time, usually 1 to 3 days. It can last up to 2 weeks.

What causes acute diarrhea?

What other signs and symptoms might I have with acute diarrhea?

You may have 3 or more episodes of diarrhea. It may be hard to control your diarrhea. You may also have any of the following:

What does my healthcare provider need to know about my acute diarrhea?

Your healthcare provider will ask about your symptoms. He or she will ask what you have recently eaten and if you have traveled to other countries. Tell the provider what medicines you use or if you have been around anyone who is sick. Your healthcare provider may check you for signs of dehydration. He or she may also test your blood and bowel movement for infection.

How is acute diarrhea treated?

Acute diarrhea usually gets better without treatment. You may need any of the following if your diarrhea is severe or lasts longer than a few days:

Treatment options

The following list of medications are related to or used in the treatment of this condition.

View more treatment options

How can acute diarrhea be managed?

How can acute diarrhea be prevented?

When should I seek immediate care?

When should I contact my healthcare provider?

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.